When I Said I Do

Whoo, today was a crazy busy day. It’s been ages since I’ve done any photography work because I was in so much pain, and REAL photography is seriously physical. Since my spinal injections a week ago, my pain level is hovering around a 4, instead of a 15 (on a scale of 1 to 10). When a friend mentioned that her daughter was getting married, I asked if they had a photographer and she said no, they had run out of money. I jumped at the chance to offer up my services just to get something new and fresh into my portfolio, and my camera into my hands!


Of course, as my husband so often has to remind me, pain is only a fraction of my constant battle…fatigue is more often the enemy. It KILLS me to have to sit still or lie around. I hate it. I was an extremely active person…until I wasn’t. Even now, when I know that it’s smarter to manage my energy levels rather than doing too much because I happen to feel good that day, only to exhaust myself, I still have problems with taking it easy.

Ron finally got a taste of what my life is like…he’s got the flu. His boss sent him home on Thursday afternoon, and Ron was even worse on Friday morning. Even though he felt like crap, he wasn’t sleepy; he ended up surfing the web and playing his latest game. After what seemed like every few hours or so, he’d look at the clock and be shocked at how little time had actually passed. When it was finally 7pm, he whined, “Isn’t this day ever going to end?” I laughed! Yup, welcome to my world.

We had absolutely beautiful, gorgeous, amazing weather; the bride was so happy, and said she’d been worrying for six weeks about whether or not it would rain. The wedding was in a large hall in the middle of nowhere, without a paved parking lot, and she was concerned she’d be stuck walking through mud in her dress. Instead, all of the wedding party photos were taken in the field behind the hall, with all of the girls’ stiletto heeled shoes sinking into the soft ground, of course.

She had a friend who is a photography student already committed to taking pictures of the reception; I covered the three hours before the wedding and then we both took pics of the wedding party, the bride and her parents, the groom and his mom, etc. When someone found a ladder leaning against the back of the building, I grabbed it (quite hilarious to watch me wrestling an 8 ft ladder while holding my camera and trying to ignore my car keys stabbing me in the chest because I’d had to stick them in my bra) and climbed up.

I was so paranoid about my rusty skillz, I took my laptop with me so I could look at all the photos before I left, in case I needed to re-shoot something. I was happily surprised that they turned out well, in spite of my external flash not working, and my having to rely on the on-board flash. I was changing shutter speeds and ISO settings every couple of seconds to compensate, but experience often makes up for equipment failure. I’m sure the photog student wondered what the hell I was doing…I highly suspect she had her camera set to auto, because I never saw her change any of her settings. In spite of having a smart camera that is perfectly capable of turning out great pictures in auto, I always do everything manually. I like the creative control, even though that means I’m frantically loading up pictures in my car, checking to see that I’ve got what I want and allowing me to start breathing again.

I did have a bit of fun with the bridesmaids while we waited for the bride’s makeup to be done. I took portrait shots of everyone, and one girl had this quite beautiful tattoo of two roses on her shoulder. She was really shy about my taking her picture, because she believed she’s not photogenic. Any decent photographer can make anyone look good, and I’m better than decent. I told her about how one of my friends claims I have a magic camera that takes pounds and years off her every time I take her photo. Then I showed the bridesmaid the ones I had just snapped of her, and she was so excited, she asked if I would take more. She had a gorgeous tattoo of a dream catcher on the side of her thigh, so I did a little boudoir magic and then ALL of the bridesmaids were lying across the bed, glamming it up for the camera.

By the time all the photos were done and the reception was getting started, I felt like I had run a five hour long marathon. My body hurt, especially my shoulder, and I know I’m going to be paying for this tomorrow. It was totally worth it, though. I got to make a few people happy with my photography, and I got to spend a perfect spring afternoon outside with my camera.

I’m still holding out hope that although I’ll be suffering in the morning, I will be able to rally by the early afternoon and head up to Austin to IKEA for their GORM sale. After seeing an awesome sewing desk on IKEAhackers.net made from pieces of the GORM, I have got to have one. It’s exactly what I’ve been trying to figure out how to build, and to be able to make it for about $20 is unreal.

“I meant that I will, till the end of all time, be faithful and true, devoted to you, that’s what I had in mind, when I said I do.



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